Top 10 NFL players that need to be benched

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Ten NFL players who should be headed for the bench


Being a player in the NFL is a tough gig. As one can only assume, adversity is likely to flood in from every direction with every incomplete pass and every missed tackle. It’s the nature of the game and the nature of the fan.

Some players, however, deserve the criticism more than others.

Whether it’s because of a disturbing amount of interceptions or failing to live up to the big contract received during free agency, these players tend to fall out of favor because they simply become hindrances to their team’s playoff potential. The worst part of the whole process: their respective teams seem incapable of putting their rear ends on the pine.

Despite their never-ending struggles, these aforementioned players somehow continue to find their way into the starting lineup. Some maintain their standing as starters because their head coaches simply are unwilling to admit that they made a mistake. Others, however, are stuck in a starting role because there are no other capable players on the roster that have enough talent to supplant them.

Either way, it’s saddening to see teams with potential flop and flounder about because of one player who is better fit watching an NFL game from the comfort of the bench. Still, they continuously tank their teams’ chances and find any opportunity available to put them into the loss column.

Without further ado, here’s a list of the Top 10 players currently starting in the NFL who need to take a trip to the bench.

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10. Mario Williams

Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE

With how much money the Buffalo Bills spent on him to lure him away from Houston, Williams should be leading the league in sacks, fumbles forced and safeties. Instead, he’s managed a measly 16 tackles and 3.5 sacks on the season and continues to look like a middle-of-the-road talent at best. If it wasn’t for his two-sack game against a horrible Arizona offensive line… If Williams continues to display this inability to produce up to his potential, the buyer’s remorse might force the Bills to take drastic measures.

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9. BenJarvus Green-Ellis


Everyone knew that Green-Ellis wasn’t a starting-caliber running back while he was with the New England Patriots; that’s why they let him walk via free agency. He was a product of a system that forced defenses to fear the pass, which left the box clear and the running lanes open. With the Cincinnati Bengals, though, it’s a different story for the NFL’s favorite law firm. He’s averaging only 3.4 yards per carry this season and has found the endzone only twice on 125 carries. It’s time to grab some pine.

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8. Ryan Fitzpatrick

Mark J. Rebilas-US PRESSWIRE

Even with a Harvard education, Fitzpatrick still hasn’t managed to overcome the struggles that have plagued him since becoming an NFL quarterback. Even when he shows glimpses of being a starting-caliber passer, he follows those performances up with outings overflowing with interceptions. Like most of the quarterbacks suffering from hardships in the NFL, his inconsistency has been the Achilles heel. Don’t be surprised if the Bills replace Fitzpatrick this offseason.

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7. Dez Bryant


I’ve never seen an impact player who costs his team so many opportunities yet still starts week in and week out. Yes, Bryant makes big plays and has the tools to a game-breaker at wide receiver. But how many more turnovers, drops and stupid penalties can the Dallas Cowboys withstand before they send Bryant to the bench? At some point, the negatives will begin to outweigh the positives; when that happens, the Cowboys need to teach Bryant that his inconsistency is unacceptable.

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6. Malcolm Jenkins

Derick E. Hingle-US PRESSWIRE

Put simply, Jenkins isn’t the elite cornerback he was once expected to be. This season, the New Orleans Saints cornerback has been about as inefficient as any other defensive back in the NFL. He’s proven to be a huge liability in coverage and has already missed a handful of tackles. If the Saints have any hopes of digging themselves out of this 2-5 hole, they better bench Jenkins and find some better options at cornerback.

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5. Tony Romo

Matthew Emmons-US PRESSWIRE

When are the Cowboys going to understand that Romo will never get them farther than the first round of the playoffs at this point in his career? The league’s most bipolar quarterback has yet to flash any sort of consistency this season, which surprises no one. He’s already notched two games of at least four interceptions and is struggling to regularly put the Cowboys in the win column. Until he retires, Romo will forever be the ball and chain holding down Dallas’ Super Bowl dreams.

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4. Greg Little


Little has only been in the NFL for two years and has already asserted himself as the league’s most drop-prone starting wide receiver. As if the Cleveland Browns didn’t already have enough issues on offense, their most talented pass-catcher plays like he’s trying to wrangle a greased pig. Little has already dropped six passes this season, almost 25 percent of the catchable balls that have been thrown his way. Sounds like he could use some of that stickum the San Diego Chargers were using.

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3. The entire Cardinals offensive line

Cardinals OL
Matt Kartozian-US PRESSWIRE

It doesn’t matter who’s under center; the Arizona Cardinals offensive line has been putrid so far this season. Their bookends have crumbled at the slightest bit of pressure, while the interior has had more holes than a slice of Swiss. Seeing as they’ve given up 39 sacks this season – 11 more than any other team – it’s a shame they didn’t make a move at the trade deadline. Looks like Ryan Lindley will be starting before the season is over.

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2. Michael Vick


It has become brutally obvious in 2012 that Vick is no longer the dynamic playmaker that he once was. Whether it’s the turnovers or inaccuracy, the Philadelphia Eagles’ once-prized possession has now become a burden that they can’t seem to figure out how to handle. Unless Vick manages to do a 180 at midseason, there’s a good chance that we’ll see Nick Foles starting for the Eagles by season’s end.

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1. Mark Sanchez

Ed Mulholland-US PRESSWIRE

If you don’t believe that Sanchez belongs at the top of this list, you haven’t watched the New York Jets starter play this season. Either that or you’re just a fanboy you loves his team way too much to speak sourly of them. Sanchez has been the epitome of awful this season, and the Gang Green have been the biggest victims. The only reason that he has yet to see the bench is because the only other option the Jets have at quarterback is Tim Tebow.

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